Sunshine Coast businesswoman wins QLD AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award

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Thursday 2 March 2023

Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Minister and Rural Communities Minister Mark Furner has congratulated innovative dog food entrepreneur Emma Gibbons for receiving the 2023 Queensland AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award.

Ms Gibbons was recognised at a ceremony in Brisbane today for her work building a successful Queensland business with the help of sustainable agriculture.

Her Coolum Beach-based business Huds and Toke sells dog food and treats made with Australian-farmed insect protein and vegetable surplus.

The alternative ingredients mean both a lower carbon footprint and a reduction in waste.

Ms Gibbons has won a $15,000 Westpac grant and will represent Queensland as a national finalist in September, where she has the chance to win an additional $20,000 Westpac grant.

Ms Gibbons was selected from a field of four finalists who epitomised the significant impact women have on rural industries, businesses, and communities.

Kingaroy’s Emma Black, Toowoomba’s Louise Noble, and Cairns’ Kate Lamason were also nominated for the award, and have each been awarded $2000 by Award sponsor The University of Queensland to further their projects.

All finalists join a 300-strong alumni that advocates for women in regional and rural Australia and provides a network to support their future endeavours.

The Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities, Mark Furner, applauded Emma on her win.

“Congratulations to Emma whose vision and entrepreneurial approach perfectly illustrates the values of the AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award,” Mr Furner said.

“I’d also like to acknowledge the efforts of the other finalists, who have all made substantial contributions to their industries and communities,” Mr Furner said.

Mr Furner emphasised that “Queensland’s rural industries are incredibly diverse, and these women demonstrate just a few of the many roles that help grow our sector to become more sustainable and prosperous”.

“The Palaszczuk Government wants Queensland to be a global hub for AgTech, and it’s innovations like the ones utilised by the finalists that are leading the way,” Mr Furner said.

Managing Director of AgriFutures Australia John Harvey said it was “exciting to see Emma already making such a positive influence in her industry and community”.

“The AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award provides these women a platform to build on their leadership skills to drive change in rural and regional Australia,” Mr Harvey said.

Maxine Austin, Regional General Manager Northern Queensland, Regional & Agribusiness for Platinum Sponsor Westpac, also congratulated Emma on her award.

“The AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award is an opportunity to champion the business achievements of women in Queensland’s rural industries,” Ms Austin said.

Ms Austin added that “Emma is a great ambassador for Queensland’s rural industries and a beacon for its future success”.

“The winners, alumni and nominees of the highly respected Rural Women’s Award reflect the quality of innovation, drive and passion that our rural women possess,” Ms Austin said.

ENDS

Find out more about the Award

Media contact:
Abbey O’Callaghan
abbey.ocallaghan@agrifutures.com.au
0497 996 096

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